John Gatins

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US Ireland Alliance to Honor Stephen Colbert, Carrie Fisher and Irish Artist Colin Davidson

John Gatins - US Ireland Alliance to Honor Stephen Colbert, Carrie Fisher and Irish Artist Colin Davidson at Pre Academy Awards Event at Bad Robot Santa Monica, Academy Awards - Los Angeles, California, United States - Thursday 19th February 2015

Need for Speed Review


Grim

It's difficult to understand how a movie about fast cars, tough guys and feisty women could be so little fun to watch. But the filmmakers, working from a popular videogame, have managed to make something only a gaming nerd could love. It's strikingly well shot, with a likeable cast and an eye-catching use of real stuntwork, but the limp script leaves it utterly joyless. Just a tiny hint of self-awareness goes a long way in these kinds of movies.

Our hero is Toby (Paul), a super-talented driver and mechanic stuck in small-town New York while his high school rival Dino (Cooper) makes millions on the racing circuit. Dino has also stolen Toby's ex-girlfriend (Johnson), and rubs salt in the wound by asking Toby to fix up a wildly valuable Mustang for him. Toby needs the cash to save his garage, so takes on the job with his pals (Cudi, Malek and Rodriguez). But things take a dark turn when Dino leaves Toby to take the fall for manslaughter. And when he gets out of prison two years later, Toby vows to get revenge, working with hellcat racing chick Julia (Poots) to enter the underground winner-take-all race organised by a radio deejay (Keaton).

Despite trying to fool us with various plot twists, the film's script is so by-the-books that we can predict everything that will happen next. So as it heads to its jaw-droppingly implausible finale, there isn't a single moment that surprises us. All we can do is try to engage with the characters, but they take themselves so seriously that this isn't easy. Clearly, director Waugh is much more interested in the cars than the people. So at least the driving scenes are visceral and sometimes thrilling in that choreographed stunt-driver sort of way. And they're notable because there isn't a digital effect in sight.

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Writers Guild Awards (WGA)

John Gatins and guest - Writers Guild Awards (WGA) - Los Angeles, California, United States - Sunday 17th February 2013

John Gatins
John Gatins and guest
John Gatins

85th Academy Awards Nominees Luncheon

John Gatins - 85th Academy Awards Nominees Luncheon Los Angeles California United States Monday 4th February 2013

John Gatins
John Gatins
John Gatins
John Gatins

Flight Review


OK

With another deeply committed performance, Washington brings badly needed complexity to what is otherwise a contrived, overstated drama about addiction. It helps that the film is directed by Zemeckis as a kind of companion piece to his last live-action movie, 2000's Cast Away, another film about a man whose life is dramatically changed by a plane crash. Although here he's lost in a wilderness of substance abuse.

Washington plays Whip, a veteran commercial pilot who fills his days with women, alcohol and drugs. Even when he's flying a plane full of passengers. On a routine flight from Orlando to Atlanta, a catastrophic malfunction sends his airliner hurtling toward the ground, prompting an outrageously inventive reaction that saves 96 of the 102 lives on board. Then the investigators discover that he had both alcohol and cocaine in his system at the time. His union rep (Greenwood) hires a high-powered lawyer (Cheadle) to represent him, but Whip doesn't even try to straighten up until he meets young junkie Nicole (Reilly), who's serious about cleaning up her life.

The main problem here is that Gatins' script completely misses the point of his own story, never remotely touching on the central theme of a flawed hero who has no real moral compass. So drugs are the villain; it has nothing to do with Whip's personal failings. Instead, the script just uses a variety of contrived characters to confront him with his drug problems until he finally cracks under all this pressure. Fortunately, Washington is excellent as the high-functioning addict, and the supporting cast is solid in providing whatever element Gatins needs at the moment: Cheadle's straight-arrow efficiency, Reilly's hopeful anguish and Greenwood's steadfast friendship, plus scene-stealer Goodman as Whip's hilariously honest dealer-buddy and Leo as a ruthlessly tenacious investigator.

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Picture - John Gatins , Thursday 10th January 2013

John Gatins Santa Monica, California, United States 18th Annual Critics' Choice Movie Awards held at Barker Hangar - Arrivals Thursday 10th January 2013

John Gatins
John Gatins

Denzel Washington Set for Oscar Success with ‘Flight’?


Denzel Washington Robert Zemeckis John Gatins Bruce Greenwood Daniel Day Lewis Joaquin Phoenix Bradley Cooper John Hawkes Ben Affleck Jamie Foxx Quentin Tarantino

Denzel Washington’s latest film, Flight, has garnered much praise already – and for all the right reasons too – with Washington already tipped for Oscar glory for his staring role.

The film itself, directed by Robert Zemeckis and written by John Gatins, tells the story of an airline pilot who saves a flight from crashing, however the post-flight investigation into the plane’s malfunctions reveals some worrying revelations. Washington stars as said pilot, Whip Whitaker, who on top of being a veteran of his trade is also a serious alcoholic. The film also stars Bruce Greenwood as the character Charlie Anderson.

Whilst still a newcomer to the box office, critics look as though they can’t get enough of Washington and his performance, and betting sites have already placed the double-Oscar winner among the top contenders to achieve Oscar glory at next years ceremony. 

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Real Steel Review


OK
Undemanding audiences will love this rousing father-son tale of redemption set amid the cacophonous crashing of boxing robots. But the script is seriously contrived, and the movie is directed without even an inkling of subtlety.

In the near future, Charlie (Jackman) is an ex-boxer who now controls massive robots that have taken over the sport. A stubborn failure buried in debt, he has no interest in his 11-year-old son Max (Goyo), whose mother has just died, but agrees to care for him until his rich aunt and uncle (Davis and Rebhorn) return from holiday. But Max is far more savvy with robots than his dad. And with the help of Dad's lovelorn pal Bailey (Lilly), Max defies Charlie's expectations with his scrapheap robot Atom.

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Dreamer: Inspired By A True Story Review


OK
Take Seabiscuit, remove the cussing, the drunkenness, the Depression, and all the death, and add in one prococious little blonde girl. You pretty much have Dreamer, a perfectly acceptable family film that, nonetheless, adds nothing to the genre.

Heck, if you throw in a zebra as well you have Racing Stripes, which came out a year earlier and told the same story: Girl adopts horse that no one believes in (in Dreamer it's a horse with a broken leg, not a zebra), who goes on to fame at the races. The film is based on a true story -- as the title probably clued you in -- about a horse named Mariah's Storm, a female who broke her leg and, after being completely written off, eventually returned to the track and earned hundreds of thousands of dollars. It's pretty much the same story here, though the horse is named Sonador (Spanish for "dreamer," if you add in a tilde), and genre-appropriate villains are written in to the tale.

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Hardball Review


Terrible
Brian Robbins' Hardball is quite the cinematic achievement. In about two hours, we get a glancing examination of ghetto life, a funeral with a heartfelt eulogy, speeches about never giving up, a cache of cute kids (including a fat one with asthma), a hard-luck gambler who finds salvation in a good woman and a climactic "big game," where the underdogs prove to have a bigger bite than anyone ever imagined.

All that's needed is a guy getting hit in the nuts and a food fight to have the first film solely based on cinematic clichés. I can't wait to see the deleted scenes when it comes out on DVD.

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Summer Catch Review


Grim
Kids today, they don't just want to see heartthrob and master thespian Freddie Prinze Jr. loving on the ladies. No, they want to see him doing something that takes a little more in the acting department: namely, playing baseball.

Through a series of drippy voiceovers, we are informed that there's no better proving ground for Major League Baseball than the Cape Cod summer baseball leagues, where college also-rans and hopeful dropouts go to play in the hopes of attracting big league attention. Our man Freddie has landed a spot as a pitcher on the prestigious Chatham A's, where he is hoping for his big break.

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Varsity Blues Review


Grim
What makes a good football movie? God knows it's been done before. I don't think there's anything left to be done. Necessary Roughness, North Dallas Forty, even last year's Waterboy are all basically the same. The only thing left to do is to make them as good as the others. I'm tired of seeing the final tackle in slow motion while the team looks on in anguish. I'm tired of hearing the dramatic music that's a dead giveaway that someone's about to get injured. I'm tired of the fact that writers think that it's suspenseful to watch a field goal being kicked with 2 seconds to go. I'm tired of the same old stuff!

In Varsity Blues, James Van Der Beek stars as Jonathan Moxon, a second string quarterback who never gets any playing time because of the star quarterback of a small town in Texas. This town is obsessed with football and treats like a second religion. For two hours we are treated to the adventures of Moxon who has to deal with his football hating girlfriend, an evil legendary coach (Jon Voight) and other teenage challenges. And to be honest, it's a little boring.

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Coach Carter Review


OK
Even those unfamiliar with real-life high school basketball coach Ken Carter might find familiar elements in the inspirational drama based on his achievements. After all, how many different ways can you tell the story of a coach who inherits a team torn apart and transforms them from chaotic underachievers to state title contenders?

Except in this case, the events actually happened. Coach Carter (Samuel L. Jackson) benched his undefeated Richmond Oilers in 1999 because the team failed to meet academic requirements he established at the start of the season. Amid protests from both school faculty and area parents, Carter locked his players out of the gymnasium and drove them into the library until their grades were up to snuff.

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John Gatins

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